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Major League Baseball appoints gay former Miami Beach resident Billy Bean consultant for inclusion

BY DAVE CAMPBELL
AP SPORTS WRITER

MINNEAPOLIS -- Major League Baseball has appointed former outfielder Billy Bean, who came out as gay after his playing career, to serve as a consultant in guiding the sport toward greater inclusion and equality.

Commissioner Bud Selig made the announcement Tuesday before the All-Star game.

Joining Bean and Selig at a news conference was Lutha Burke, the sister of Glenn Burke, who was the first MLB player to come out as gay after retiring. Burke died in 1995.

Bean will provide guidance and training related to efforts designed to support the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community throughout baseball. He'll work with players and front office personnel through the major and minor leagues.

Bean played for Detroit, the Los Angeles Dodgers and San Diego over parts of six seasons and hit .226. He dedicated his autobiography to Burke.

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An outstanding choice. Anyone who knows Billy Bean has never had to define him by his "sexual orientation;" Billy's best defined as just, one hell of a guy. Period.

Baseball has no business doing this fans should rebel, even boycott games.

What are his qualifications to 'consult' other than being gay? That's like saying I'm qualified to be a marriage counselor because I'm married.

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